Robert Baer spent 21 years in the CIA as a field operative. He resigned after leading an aborted attempt on Saddam Hussein. He is the author of four NEW YORK TIMES bestsellers. His memoir SEE NO EVIL was made into the Academy Award-winning movie SYRIANA. He anchored an Emmy-nominated British documentary series, THE CULT OF THE SUICIDE BOMBER. He is the intelligence columnist for TIME.com and a regular BBC and CNN contributor. He currently lectures various US government agencies on assassination.
Nicola Baird is a writer of books, blogs and journalism covering eco know-how, parenting and travel.
R. Scott Bakker is the son of a tobacco share-cropper, and spent his youth either exploring the wooded bluffs of Lake Erie's north shore or working in hot summer fields. He left the countryside to study English language and literature at University of Western Ontario, and from there moved to Nashville to pursue a PhD in philosophy. He now lives in London, Ontario with his fiancee, Sharron, and their cat, Scully.
Having written about the global activities of the Royal Navy for more than 20 years, Iain Ballantyne has spent time in most types of warship, from nuclear-powered submarines and aircraft carriers, to destroyers and frigates. He has sailed in minefields off war-torn Kuwait, witnessed embargo enforcement in the Adriatic and counter-terrorism sweeps in the Mediterranean. Iain has also voyaged into Arctic waters and accompanied Royal Marines on fast boat patrols off Hong Kong. He won an award for his action-packed depiction of the pursuit and destruction of Hitler's flagship, as recounted in KILLING THE BISMARCK, his last book prior to HUNTER KILLERS for Orion. In 2017 Iain Ballantyne was awarded a Fellowship by the UK's Maritime Foundation, one of its top annual awards, in recognition of his immense contribution to the maritime cause since 1990, as a journalist, author of naval history books and Editor of WARSHIPS magazine from 1998 to the present.http://www.iainballantyne.com/
Helen Banes is a fibre artist and jewellery designer. Born in Chicago in 1920, she has studied at the University of Maryland and Parsons School of Design. She is a founding member of Fiberworks Gallery in Alexandria, Virginia, and the founding president of the Bead Society of Greater Washington. A desire to incorporate beads and other perforated objects into her woven pieces led to her most important artistic innovation: the method of stringing beads on a double warp, using a shaped loom on a light-weight portable board. She has given numerous lectures and workshops throughout the US and Canada, and her necklaces have been exhibited in galleries, including the Smithsonian Institute.
Daniel Barenboim was born in Buenos Aires in 1942, educated in Rome and made his piano debut at the age of eight and as a solo pianist at the age of eleven with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra. His musical tours have taken him all over the world and he has made regular appearances at the Bayreuth, Edinburgh, Lucerne, Prague and Salzburg festivals. In 1967 he married the cellist Jacqueline du Pré (who died in 1987). In 1988 he married Elena Bashkirova. He was musical director of the Paris Orchestra 1975-88, and he has been Music Director of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra since 1991 and of the Berlin State Opera since 1992.
Sean Barrett has narrated many television documentaries for the BBC and Discovery Channel, notably THE PEOPLE'S CENTURY, WALKING WITH BEASTS, and GREAT LIVES. As a member of the BBC Radio Rep, he has appeared in hundreds of radio plays, and played Father Gillespie in the BBC Worldservice / BBC7 serial WESTWAY throughout its eight year-run. As a film and television actor he has appeared in pieces as diverse as TWELFTH NIGHT and FATHER TED, and he is a doyen of audiobook reading, with acclaimed recordings of authors ranging from Chaucer to Beckett and in 2012 recorded Antony Beevor's THE SECOND WORLD WAR.
Previous titles include: Great Paper Quilling, Wonderful Wire Works, Glass Painting In An Afternoon, Decorating Your Garden, Fantastic Furniture
Alistair Beaton is one of the country's leading satirical writers, and makes frequent appearances on Radio 4. His hit comedy Feelgood won the Evening Standard Award in 2001
David Bird is recognised as the world's leading humorous bridge writer. He has written over 130 bridge books, and in the last ten years he has won six 'Book of the Year' awards from the American Bridge Teachers Association - and in 2016 won the International Bridge Press Association Book of the Year Award for The Abbot, the Parrot and the Bermuda Bowl. David contributes regularly to Bridge Magazine, English Bridge, Bridge World, the American Contract Bridge League bulletin and other magazines around the world, as well as Vu-Bridge on the internet. He is also a voice commentator for Bridge Base Online. He lives in Chandlers Ford, Hampshire, England.
Barry Bostwick is an American actor and singer. He is best known for playing Brad in the 1975 cult classic The Rocky Horror Picture Show, and has also had considerable fame in musical theatre.
George Bredehorn is a retired teacher who lives in Wantagh, New York and is a member of Mensa. His puzzles appear regularly in publications such as The New York Times and Games.
Sally Brock is an internationally known player and writer. Sally is also the current bridge correspondent for the Sunday Times.
John Browne (Lord Browne of Madingley) was born in Germany in 1948 and joined BP as a university apprentice in 1966. He was Group Chief Executive of BP from 1995 to 2007, where he built a reputation as a visionary leader and was regularly voted the most admired businessman by his peers. He was knighted in 1998 and made a life peer in 2001. He is now a managing partner of Riverstone LLC, an international energy private equity firm, a Fellow of the Royal Society (UK), President of the Royal Academy of Engineering and Chairman of the Tate Gallery.
Previous titles by the author: Memory Gifts, Beautiful Handmade Natural Soaps, Handcrafted Journals Albums & Scrapbooks, Hand Decorating Paper.
Melt & Pour Soapmaking is a selection of Crafters Choice Book Club
Frank Buttler, former Head of Inorganic Chemistry at Teesside University and an industrial consultant, has written many scientific papers and books. Simon Buttler, his son, is a computer systems analyst, project manager and consultant and also an archaeologist.
Art has always been a passion for Rebecca Carter and after receiving a scholarship for Southern Utah University, she graduated with a degree in fine art and a three year degree in interior design. After leaving university, Rebecca taught calligraphy and watercolour classes, until the opportunity to work as a corporate designer came along. She now works from home as a free-lance artist for many companies.
Anastasia Catris graduated from Royal Holloway, University of London with a BA Hons in English Literature and then travelled to the United States to pursue her passion for illustration by studying at The Kubert School of Comic and Cartoon Art. She returned to the UK in 2009, and has since worked as a freelance illustrator for HarperCollins, Kerrang!, Fox, Marvel, DC and Cygnus Alpha: The Doctor Who Fanzine. Ana lives in Wales, United Kingdom, and is an advocate of art therapy and of the calming power of colouring in. www.anastasiacatris.comInstagram: @AnastasiaCatris
John Chaneski has a long history of playing and creating games, going all the way back to his reign as world Peekaboo champion of 1963-64. A graduate of New York University¿s Tisch School of the Arts, he has parlayed a degree in drama into a perplexing career writing puzzles, articles and reviews for magazines and websites. John lives in Hoboken, NJ.
Ben Chu is the Economics Editor of the INDEPENDENT. He was born and brought up in Manchester, and studied Modern History at Jesus College, Oxford.